Thursday, 28 June 2007

Fossil Hunt at Writhlington, Radstock

Today, the pupils of Lowry class from Kilmersdon School visited Radstock Museum and Writhlington Batch. The latter is a really good place to find Coal Measures plant fossils. Lots of leaves from seed ferns (Neuropteris photo) and ferns were found plus many leaves from Cordaites, thought to be an ancestor of the conifers. There were also numerous Horsetail (Calamites) stems and some horsetail leaves (Annularia). Only one example of Club Moss (Lepidodendron) bark was found. At the Museum, the children learned about coal mining in the area and visited the mine reconstruction.

The displays in Radstock Museum reflect the history of the local community. It is well worth a visit; have a look at the website.

Climate Change

This blog was intended to be about geology in the west country but I was sent this video clip and want to share it with everyone. What do you think?

Wednesday, 27 June 2007

A Journey across 400 million years

This new publication by Avon RIGS is excellent and tells the story of the geological history of South Gloucestershire, spanning some 400 million years.

Three 'must see' sites are mentioned, with grid references, Aust Cliff, Huckford Quarry Local Nature Reserve and Wick Golden Valley Local Nature Reserve. There are 6 new information boards in the area and 5 other sites of interest are mentioned.

The story goes from the oldest limestones and lavas through mountains and coral seas to tropical forests to deserts and back to the sea again. The text is well illustrated featuring diagrams, maps, fossils, photos of what you will see and impressions of what the area looked like in the past. The booklet concludes with a generalised geology map. It is free and can be obtained from the Avon RIGS group.

Thursday, 14 June 2007

Wootton Bassett Mud Springs

The author of this excellent book 'Hidden Depths' is leading a field trip for the Bath Geological Society, and for anyone else who wants to go, this Saturday 16th June. She will be visiting the strange Wootton Bassett mud springs and looking at the Upper Jurassic Portlandian sequence in Swindon Railway Cutting. The geology of the springs is well described in the book which can be obtained from the author, Wiltshire Geology Group or from Ex Libris Press at £9.95.

Everyone is welcome on Saturday; visitors are asked to pay £3.00.

Thursday, 7 June 2007

Thornbury Geology Group

There is yet another geological organisation in the West Country! Thornbury Geology Group was formed in 2003 and is based at Thornbury Museum, (follow the link - Newsletters - Geology Research).

Meetings are held at 7.30p.m. in the Chantry, Castle Street, Thornbury on the third Thursday of each month. Although no formal lectures are arranged, members are encouraged to share their interest in geology with others at the meetings. Field meetings are held during the spring and summer months. You can contact the organiser by email.

Monday, 4 June 2007

All Sites of Geological Interest in Avon

Did you know that in Bristol City Museum, there is a CD describing all the sites of geological interest in the old Avon area (Bristol, North Somerset, Bath & North East Somerset and South Gloucestershire). Eventually, it is hoped to publish this on the Museum's website.

Saturday, 2 June 2007

Earth Learning Idea - Quake Shake

'Quake Shake - will my home collapse?'
This is the first sample activity to be published by Earth Learning Idea.
It is a simple investigation into why some buildings collapse when an earthquake strikes and why some do not. Like all ELI activities, it requires minimal cost and equipment and will lead to lots of discussion.

Earth Learning Idea will publish Earth-related teaching ideas for teachers and teacher trainers across the globe. One activity will be published every week next year, The International Year of Planet Earth.

Please have a look at our website - Links - Earth-related activities and let us know what you think either by email ( or by clicking the 'comment' link below.